The Shakin' Pyramids, The Streets of Glasgow

The Shakin' Pyramids hail from Scotland, where the trio were busking the streets of Glasgow. Bored with the lack of excitement in their own home region, they heard Paris calling. The sound of manic rockabilly almost brought on the second French revolution. Pop pickin' is a fast and furious business, and on their return to Scotland, the emergent Cuba Libre label (a Virgin subsidiary) promised fame and fortune for The Pyramids. Now we find ourselves during the summer of 1980 in a damp, dingy basement called, quite appropriately, "The Hellfire Club". "Reeferbilly Boogie" - the tape runs and the band are off, laying down some blow-inspired booty, wild, hard-hitting and uninhibited.

The Pyramids had the extraordinary ability to play and perform anywhere they would choose. Surprised passers-by from the Glasgow streets had become audiences, boppin' and stompin' to their all-out tempos on street corners all over the country. The original band consisted of twin guitarists James G. Creighton and Railroad Ken with harmonica player Dave Duncan.

They first release an EP titled "Take a Trip" in early '81 which was taken from the later released debut album "Skin 'Em Up", a rip-roaring item, praised by every rockin' cat in those days. Their selfpenned songs "Take A Trip", "Let's Go" and "Hellbent On Rockin'" are still considered gems in the jewelbox of every rockabilly collector.

They then had a 45 titled "Tennesee Rock'n'Roll" b/w "Alright Alnight" which was also simultaneously released with the same tracks and 2 further tracks ("Muskrat Ramble" and "Too NNNervous to Rock") on a limited edition EP, followed by an EP recorded with skiffle star Lonnie Donegan, a prime rock & roll influence during the 1950s in England.

Shakin' Pyramids recorded one more album for Virgin, "Celts & Cobras", and one more 45 "Pharoah's Chant" b/w "Just One Time". "Pharoah's Chant" is interesting as it preceded "Walk Like an Egyptian" by the Bangles yet contains the same chant, utterance for utterance! Sadly the energy and verve of their debut had been replaced by a stultifying maturity, and the group disbanded soon after.

The Shakin' Pyramids are:
Dave Duncan - vocals, harp, percussion
James G. Creighton -
acoustic & electric guitar, vocals
Ken McLellan
- acoustic guitar, vocals

Guest musicians:
Geraint Watkins - accordion
Bob Andrews - piano
Mitch Caws - slap bass
John Willoughby - upright bass
Andy Howell - electric bass
Paul Hughes - electric bass
Kirsty McColl - backing vocals
Jane Aire - backing vocals
Nick Clark - Bass

LP/CD discography:
Skin 'Em Up - Cuba Libre/Virgin LP, 1981
Celts And Cobras - Cuba Libre/Virgin LP, 1982
Shakin' Pyramids - Scotti Bros. Compilation LP, 1983
Shakin' Pyramids, The Collection - CD
Reeferbilly Blowout (Live) - Raucous Records CD, 2001

The BlackCat, 2000

Source: Liner Notes & All Music Guide
Additional information by Ant Hanlon, 2005